Thursday, August 13, 2015

Many Balls in the Air

Today there are a bunch of updates on several ongoing projects:

Bees: they are doing well. It appears they are about 1/3 through another comb. There are so many bees out foraging that they arrive back at the hive at a rate of about 3-4 bees per second. The pollen they carry ranges from white all the way to a deep olive green, which might be an aster species. I'm worried, though, that they won't have enough time to build up their honey stores before the fall. Unless something amazing happens in the next month, I will likely have to feed them over the winter.

Grapes: while we were at the Y last week I noticed some tiny wild grapes. This week I picked about 1.5 pounds with the help of my younger child. While not enough to do anything with at the moment, they are washed and in the freezer waiting until I have at least 3 pounds so I can make jelly.

Cornichons: the recipe for these said they would be ready in a month, so I made a date on the calendar for today. I thawed some paté and spruce paste and we had that, with the cornichons, cheeses, bread, grapes, and chilled steamed green beans in a vinaigrette, for our dinner. They were spicy and crisp, mmm! The grapes were weird - elongated pointy things called "Witch Fingers." Have you ever seen them? Well, as I've previously mentioned, I'm a sucker for unusual foods or if they have limited availability. They taste like any other grape. Which is a good thing.

Pickles and jam ready to be gifted.
Wintergreen ice cream: I made brownies today, partly for us and partly for the guys who are still toiling away on our water main. This morning they started to work in front of the driveway before I knew they were there and so I had to go rushing out and ask them to stop long enough for me to get my car out. They were kind enough to do so (my heart sank as I ran out and watched the backhoe take a huge bite out of the pavement...but not so much that I couldn't get my car over it) and I reciprocated with lemonade and brownies. As before with the zucchini bread, the empty plate and pitcher were at my door within about 2 minutes. Anyway, we had brownies and wintergreen ice cream for dessert.

Gifts: we have two sets of new neighbors, next door and across the street. I brought each of them a few of jars of jam and pickles. I hope they feel welcome. Moving to a new place can be pretty overwhelming!

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